(This is the same Ark that Indiana Jones is looking for by the way)
What we know is that the Ark of the Covenant was the place where God met and talked to Moses, it was made out of Acacia wood and covered with Gold. It didn’t “house” the Lord, it was just a means of the Lord having community with us. The Tabernacle was then built for the Ark.
- Back in Exodus 25 God gave Moses directions to build the Ark.
- Then in Exodus 26 the Veil. This veil needed specific instruction because it was to be strong! The only thing that would tear the Veil would be the Lord. Oh and He did alright!.
- Then in Exodus 40 the Ark is now in the Tabernacle
- The Ark moves (carried!) in the wandering for 40 years.
- In Joshua 3, the Priests carry the Ark across the Jordan River
- In Joshua 6 the Ark is carried to Jericho
- In Joshua 8 the Tabernacle moves to Shiloh. (stays there a long time)
- In Judges 20 the Ark is taken to Bethel
- Then we hear about it again when we meet Samuel, who is caring for it as a child
- Then the Philistines take the Ark! 1 Sam 4
- 2 Chapters later they return it! LOL.
- Then some men looked into the Ark. Why? to see God. Uhhh they are dead.
- IN 1 Samuel 7 the Ark is brought to Abinadab’s and it stays there for 20 years.
- Saul then makes the mistake of bringing the Ark with him to the battle camp. (lucky charm)
- We clearly remember the Ark moving on the ox cart and Uzzah stabilizing it. Ouch! SO the Ark was halted at the house of Obed-Edom for 3 months.
- The Ark is was carried through the gates of the City of David, Jerusalem and put in a tent.
- Today we read it is brought to the Threshing floor, the very place the Temple will be built.
Later the Ark will be put in the temple, and where it is now…only God knows. Was it destroyed in the Temple? was it stolen by Nebuchadnezzar? or did the priests hide it? Another one of God’s great mysteries.
Faith would be EASY if we had evidence, wouldn’t it? We would be able to say with our head, “see, God does exist…Here is Noah’s Ark, or here are Moses’ Bones, here are the 10 commandments, here is the Ark of the Covenant”.
In Hebrews 11:1 we learn the definition of Faith:
Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.
(Plus we wouldn’t have the Movies “Raiders of the Lost Ark”)
Day 143! And WOW what a read. One of the best things I think we did in this reading was to read Job first (does our brain go back that far) Why? Because we always need to remember that Satan is real and that he is very much at work in our lives. If we believe in God, we must believe in Satan. The Chronicler inserted that Satan is a huge part of this story.
Remember this chapter falls somewhere in the middle of David’s life. Chronologically. What did David do that was so wrong? Well, speculating it might have been taking the census (prompted by Satan) was David’s way of sizing up his power for battle. When we are in a battle all we need is the Lord. After all the Lord has done, David has forgotten. (ahhhhem, sorry, something stuck in my throat). Maybe he was counting his men pridefully, to see how many he had? Not sure but the Lord knows the reason.
If you are wondering why David was called “a man after God’s own heart” it is because when he sins (we ALL do) he recognizes it, confesses it and repents from it immediately. A huge thing to think about this weekend is how do we handle our sin? Brush it under the carpet, say “well no one is perfect”, continue it, or do you do what I do..rationalize it?
So God gave David 3 choices. 2 of them were at the hands of men, 1 was at the hands of the Lord. God may be more powerful, but God is just and right and loving. We need to get our stuff right with God and say “deal with me ever so severely”..before people deal with it. So confess it and agree with God that what we did was wrong. And then TURN away form it. David chose to be at the hands of the Lord.
This Threshing floor. Oh I wish I could see it. Touch it. Lay down on it. This spot on this earth is so Holy. This is where an Angel stood, where Abraham brought Isaac, an Alter was made to the Lord and then where the Temple was built.
P.S. Don’t forget the Psalm.
That’s right….another book to check off our list “complete” (if you have a brain like me)
It’s getting HOT~! Idea. Print the Below readings for the week. Roll them up and carry them with your stuff this week. When you stop to take a break or are waiting on something (like a game to start, or kids pick up line, a Kindergarten graduation, a real graduation, Dr.’s appt….) Jump into a reading.
DOn’t Let BUSY and HOT put you hehind this week!
David’s song of Praise. David has such a relationship through obedience to the Lord that look at this final Psalm in chapter 22. This is not a praise song of the Lord, it is a song of praise TO the Lord. I think we speak more of Him than To him. David first speaks of all the mighty deeds the Lord has done in our life. If we took the time and sat down, I know we could come up with quite the list too, then the Psalm turns direction to the Lord, talking directly to Him. I know when I became a Christian and heard people say they has a relationship with the Lord I was like….. HUH? How can that happen? How? I will tell you…By speaking TO him not of Him. Speak directly to the Lord, and He will speak directly back. Try it.
The Last Words of David.
The Spirit of the LORD spoke through me;
his word was on my tongue. (vs 2)
In David’s last words the first thing he says is, I am just a vessel or an instrument that the Lord used. On our dying day is that something we will be able to say? Did we allow God to use us as He instructed? We are His hands and feet for helping the widows, for feeding the poor, for spreading His name, for teaching our children, for loving our neighbor.
David’s Mighty Men. Out of hundreds of men that were in David’s army, there were 2 distinct groups. You had THE THREE and the THIRTY. Think of this from 2 different perspective. From David’s eyes: who are your army? One of the names on the list was Uriah the Hittite (Bathsheba’s husband). WHo are the people we have in our lives that will help us to be what God wants us to be. From the Army viewpoint: we are God’s army now. Who are we following. Are we like the men that flip to the next best talker. We go to the leader that tells us what we want to hear? The one that will benefit us the most? Or are we following a man that may have some faults but loves and follows the Word of God above all else. (who are the friends that we look up to…it matters)
Psalm 57. One thing we need to really look at as a character of David (since God is using him as a vessel to give us a message) is that no matter how bad our circumstances, marital, children, financial, health…we need to take shelter and refuge in the Lord. We need to know His love for us forever and we must ALWAYS Praise him and awake to a new day with His name on our Lips. We have read story after story after story…God’s people were always delivered from whatever the circumstance against them was. God is unchanging…and we are His people now.
Sorry, I got wrapped up in my unsolicited political soap box that I forgot to attach the click here on the post a minute ago. Have a wonderful Saturday! I know I will.
I promise to keep this short after reading today. Click here. You you feel like this is hard to read….it is. Don’t get stressed. It is like jumping into a College History Class. Because it is!!!
So as David returns to Jerusalem he makes his political moves as well as his personal moves. He appoints Amasa back to his commander (in 17:25 Absalom had made him commander of his army), this united the kingdom back. David spared Shimei (go back to Chapter 16, he is the one who cursed at him) and then restored Mephibosheth (I told you the other day Ziba was lying) If any of this confuses you, just let me know in comments and I will be more specific.
Joab: what a character. Joab was:
- the one David used to plot against Bathsheba’s husband Uriah to have him killed,
- then murdered Abner without permission,
- murdered Abslamom AGAINST orders from David
- and now out of jealousy has killed Amasa, in order to gain his ranking position back.
Chapter 21. The next 4 chapters are like an appendix to this book. These events are not necessarily in chronological order. It is the Record of David’s reign. In my bible this chapter is called The Gibeonites Avenged. If this confused you that means you WERE paying attention (becuase it was not revorded). There was a treaty made in Joshua 9:3-27 Click here for chapter, that Saul obviously did not adhere to and must have drawn blood against them. This seems to have happened after the restoration of Mephibosheth but before the Absalom stuff. This story was not told in either Samuel or Chronicles.
A few of the things I noted was Vs. 8 Merab was Saul’s daughter who was promised to be David’s wife. Rizpah, the daughter that camped out, for about 6 months, till her father was buried properly with his sons.
Shoot! THis is getting long. May I say something on my mind. I read this in context of America today. When I got to chapter 20 I put a big USA in my margin. You are seeing how un-united (is that a word), how weak, how divided, the 12 tribes of Israel has become from people speaking against the appointed leaders. I tried to image them with Facebook, and what their status posts would be about David, the King. How bashing him publicly only divides the kingdom and pulls them further from the Lord. Publicly humiliating or rebelling against the leaders of our country is new for America. This did not happen before Nixon was president. Think of Truman, or Kennedy. When Presidents and leaders (even ones that make mistakes) are supported publicly (did I spell that wrong), the country as a whole can be productive because of UNITY. We can be used by the Lord as an ARMY! I just had to get that out after reading Sheba.
Click here. However, after reading it 3 times to “get it” you may want to try a version like The Message if you are overwhelmed. FIXED….sorry. I was studing too much.
Chapter 16:Tough tough read. Cross referencing really helps these chapters make more sense. First, go back to 2 Sam 9 to recall who Ziba and Mephibosheth are. David had visited Mephibosheth after becoming king and restored his estate, for he was the crippled grandson of Saul (son of Jonathon). Was Ziba, telling the truth, NO, Ziba’s story was a lie. (Knowing this will make the story easier to read, we will see why at the end of the week.)
Can I take a minute to push aside all that David fails on as a person but to look at his character with the man that curses him. He truly is a man after God’s heart because He makes very kind decisions most of the time. Yes, he has made some stupid ones (who hasn’t) but his kindness to people is so recognizable. This example with the cursing man showed real character. David was an appointed king of the Lord, and his manners were perfect trusting that all things come from the Lord. There was a purpose behind what might be happening
We need to go back to 2 prior scriptures:
- GO back to 2 Sam 3:6-7: When someone sleeps with their father’s concubine they are making a claim to the throne. (That is why Saul’s son got angry at Abner’s remark) In this case, Absalom was making a major game move sleeping with the concubines.
- Look at Nathan’s prophecy after David slept with Bathsheba
This is what the LORD says: ‘Out of your own household I am going to bring calamity upon you. Before your very eyes I will take your wives and give them to one who is close to you, and he will lie with your wives in broad daylight. You did it in secret, but I will do this thing in broad daylight before all Israel.’ ” (2 Sam 12:11)
- Last, this advice from Apithophel for him to sleep with the concubines…wise advice? No, BUT was an answered pray actually:
Now David had been told, “Ahithophel is among the conspirators with Absalom.” So David prayed, “O LORD, turn Ahithophel’s counsel into foolishness.” (2 Sam 15:31)
Does Chapter 16 make sense now. It may need a re-read. (It took me 3 times)
Chapter 17: Absalom kept asking for advice until he liked the answer (ahem..we so do that don’t we). Anyway, if you weren’t sure why Ahithophel hung himself, remember he was once David’s closest councilor and now he was on the other side of this war. When Absalom took the advice of Hushai, he knew the plan would fail and did not want to have to face David as an enemy.
Verse 18:9. I told you to put a scripture in your pocket 2 days ago…about his lovely hair. Now you see why. 🙂 The Lord used it.
Chapter 18: David says“I myself will surly march out with you”. Obviously David remembered the last time he disobeyed and didn’t fight with his men…disaster (He met Bathsheba). One verse that caught my eye was:
The battle spread out over the whole countryside, and the forest claimed more lives that day than the sword. (18:8)
“All is well!” He bowed down before the king with his face to the ground and said, “Praise be to the LORD your God! He has delivered up the men who lifted their hands against my lord the king.” (18:28)
The Lord won this battle! (As always).
A few extra notes I wrote in my bible were
- 18:17, the stones on the grave marked disrespect. That was considered a criminal’s burial.
- 18:18, Absalom has no son (anymore)? Did they all die fighting their fathers fight? Sad. (look at 14:27)
- David Mourns: This Father/son relationship is beautiful. It is a portrait of the love for our father/child relationship with the Lord. All the wrongs and sins the child committed, the only thing the father wanted was to hold his son. Love him. Forgive him. He wanted him back, safe. David had the heart of Christ and we are the Absalom in life. Looking for rewarding advice, vanity, greed, revenge, sex…and our Father only wants us back.
Gotta go. I could type all day. If you feel overwhelmed give it a little while and then pull the version up in the Message and read it again. It is worth it. The Lord will put people, scenarios of your own life or yourself in your head WHILE reading today. This is HIM speaking. Discern it.
Reading this story makes some of the Psalms we have read make more sense. David’s life is just upside down. Unfortunately, the troubles of David were all self caused, as many of our problems in real life.
I know we all read that story and it meant something different to us. There is that voice or scene in your head that is from the Holy Spirit. God will put the thoughts in our head to give us a message at the time, that is why we say the Scriptures are living and active…when we read them, God can be so clear.
I recommend going back and reading Chapter 3 to refresh yourself of Joab. Although a great friend of David, he killed Abner. Abner was innocent and David was more concerned about his kingship at the moment than the sin that had been committed (easy to ignore sin around us seems to be a theme to me). David also has all these children, from all these different wives when it clearly said in Deuteronomy 17:17 :
He must not take many wives, or his heart will be led astray. He must not accumulate large amounts of silver and gold.
Like many great leaders in the Bible (and in life), they are successful warriors of the world but fail with their own families. Every time he is at a crossroads, he seems to make the wrong turn. Bathsheba, Uraih, Joab, Tamar, Ammon, Absalom…uggg (I totally see myself as David looking back at past decisions in my life). When you read it put a Red Dot at the points where David could have changed direction. Example: when he heard about what happened to his daughter. RED DOT. Decision? Did he handle? NO. Wrong Turn….It will shock you how many Red Dots David has YET GOD STILL LOVED HIM AND STILL USED HIM, unfortunately sat in the murk and mire of his consequences.
So here are the notes I scribbled in my Bible:
- 13:1 Ammon (1st Born, important to note, Absalom surly would want this position)
- 13:3 Jonadab is a cousin
- 13:12-13 This little paragraph is packed with History. Tamar is referring to Jewish Law in Leviticus as well as when the Israelites avenged the virgin who was raped (and then cut up into 12 pieces)
- 13:16 Sending her away would be a sin on a sin since now she could not marry.
- Why didn’t David do anything about this sin?
- 13:37 Talmai, was this Absalom’s father in law? or Grandfather? my brain is fried.
- Chapter 15…Wow…what a politician huh! I feel like I am watching Fox News!
- 15:7. Why Hebron? His Hometown, surely with his good looks he has old buddy’s that will be in his posse.
- Go back and underline 14:26. Put that in your pocket for later.
I enjoyed the reading very much, had to read it twice for some reason, my mind was just not working!
I just want to say Thank you to the Lord. He has been so faithful to my prayers. I went to bed last night exhausted, almost to tears in pain lately, and did not know how I was going to wake up and read. Well, he woke me earlier than I needed and gave me eyes to see and ears to hear. He has me in the fold of his hug today.
Well, I really don’t know where to begin. It’s mother’s day, so I opened the Bible hoping for a Proverbs 31 moment and instead we have this MAJOR story that will forever change World History. So much! I know something in this story caught your eye, I would love for you to comment and then read the blog. (You know that section on the blog that could let me know SOMEONE is out there!) I will put my two major Aha moments in comments right after I post this.
Ok, let’s break this down a little at a time. Kings went off to war, why had David not gone? Now that he was this fancy king did he feel above his people? Anyway, Joab went instead? Do you remember Abner? Joab revenged him back in 2 Sam 4, which was a direct disobedience to the Lord and David should have handled that. But David obviously was becoming desensitized to sin. (That will happen to us, when we are around it often).
The first thing I noticed was that David was bored. Nothing good comes from being bored! Think about what we do when we are bored…people drink, eat, watch stuff, gossip, meddle, inquire…If we keep busy doing the Lord’s work “thy will be done” we would be busy all the time. Anyway, David then Inquires (step 2 down the slippery slope of Sin) and you know the rest of the story. The reason they told you she had purified herself from uncleanliness was because she had finished her period, so that we would know that she was not pregnant prior to this affair.
A quote in James sums up this whole scenario
When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death. (James 1:13)
Even though David had taken 1 bad step into sin, unfortunately the more he tried to cover it the more he was sinning. And then the consequences were big: verse 10 “Now, therefore, the sword will never depart from your house” and as we read this week, we will see the horrible events that will follow. TO THIS DAY there is NO PEACE for Israel. God said never…so guess what? If you ever said you want “world peace” guess what…NEVER gonna happen! (Till He returns of course)
Out of this unfortunate story we do however see some gold. David had confessed and repented in verse 13. And the Lord forgave him immediately!! Just because we are forgiven does not mean the consequences of our actions are going to disappear though. Tomorrows Psalms were written at this moment in David’s life, if you want to feel the heart of what David was going through, read tomorrows’ Psalms right now. You can hear the actual prayers of his repentance to the Lord. And through this calamity you will also feel his Love for the Lord as He lifts this guilt from him.
Chronicles 20. Interesting how the Chronicler left out the part about David and Bathsheba, isn’t it? Recall the purpose of the book of Chronicles: it is the History of the Israel nation. God’s purpose for His people. Chronicles is about True Kingship and Worship of the Lord.
We have been is Psalms a lot so lets shake the cobwebs out and see who is fighting here. The Ammonites. DO you remember the name Ammon?
So both of Lot’s daughters became pregnant by their father. The older daughter had a son, and she named him Moab ; he is the father of the Moabites of today. The younger daughter also had a son, and she named him Ben-Ammi; he is the father of the Ammonites of today. (Gen 19: 36-38) Click here for the whole story.
So Moab and Ammon (Moabites and the Ammonites) two strong nations and obviously allies, if they are brothers. David is victorious over all!
(No blog yesterday means I have a lot to say today!). Let’s start with beards and buttocks!
- Shaving an Israelites beard was awful! First, it was part of the law but it was also a sign of maturity and a big part of their culture. (For deeply rooted Jews today it still is)
- Exposing their buttocks! My, how humiliating is that. Hanun was quick to anger and made assumptions! I think had Hanun read the book of James maybe the outcome would have been different. LOL.
“My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. (James 1:19)
Joab, by the way, is David’s nephew and his name means “Jehovah is Father”. But I like Joab for more than his name, He is a Trusting man in the Lord. Him and David prepare for battle and say “Be strong and let us fight bravely for our people and the cities of our God. The LORD will do what is good in his sight.”
DO you have a Joab in your life? Someone who will come to battle with you? Someone who trusts in the Lord so much that whatever the outcome is…He/She will know it to be right?
If one falls down,
his friend can help him up.
But pity the man who falls
and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
But how can one keep warm alone?
Though one may be overpowered,
two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken. (Ecc 4:10-12)
The Victory Psalm 20, by David, sounded like it was said BEFORE Battle.
Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.
They are brought to their knees and fall,
but we rise up and stand firm.
Hmmmm. I need to take stock in how I praise and Trust the Lord Before the battle in my life, not just after.